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IS MLS GETTING BURNED BY DALLAS MARKET? ATTENDANCE LAGGING
Published March 25, 1998
MLS attendance dropped 8.5% for its first six games, "primarily because of a sharp falloff" for the L.A. Galaxy, according to a TAMPA TRIBUNE report. MLS is averaging 19,452, down from 21,272 for its first six games last season. MLS Commissioner Doug Logan: "We're very, very pleased with the condition we're in" (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 3/25). But Logan did express concern with the 11,103 who attended the Burn's home-opener in Dallas: "We're not pleased with the results in Dallas. Last week we spent four times the amount of money in media (advertising) than we did the year before" (Peter Brewington, USA TODAY, 3/25). In Dallas, Steve Davis writes the league "remains handcuffed to mammoth football stadiums" and "changes have been slow-going." While the Burn called the Cotton Bowl a short-term solution, there are few alternatives. Davis writes that SMU will construct a 32,000-seat facility that would "be a prototype for MLS," but SMU's AD Jim Copeland said a partnership isn't "feasible" since the school prohibits non-collegiate events attended by more than 16,000 (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/25). AH, CAIRO, JEWEL OF THE NILE! MLS's DC United will make the first appearance by an MLS team in Africa when it plays Egypt's Al-Ahly club in Cairo on May 5 (AP, 3/25).